How to Read Tarot for Yourself (When You’re Feeling Emotional)

Have you ever been told you shouldn’t read Tarot for yourself when you’re upset or stressed out?

This is because your brain (and intuition) are effected by strong emotions and it can make for a biased, unhelpful reading.

But here’s the thing: this is when you really want to do a reading! Who waits until their life is perfect and stress-free to do a reading? NOBODY!

And while there are other ways to deal with stress and uncertainty, like binge watching Glow on Netflix, scarfing a whole box of shortbread cookies and yelling at your boyfriend, doing a Tarot reading might actually be the healthiest option.

So the challenge is this: how do you read Tarot for yourself when you’re feeling upset, excited or stressed out? How do you stop your desires, fears and emotions from biasing a reading?

Luckily, there’s a way!

Step One: Instead of reading about your specific issue, ask yourself how do I want to feel in this situation?

A couple of months ago I was dealing with a painful and frightening health issue. I was faced with having to make a big decision regarding surgery. Because I felt so charged up about my health, I knew it would be impossible to do an unbiased reading about it.

When I asked myself how do I want to feel (in relation to my health issue)? The answer was calm and clear. I wanted clarity as to what steps I needed to take and I wanted to feel calm and relaxed about it all.

Step Two: Once you’ve identified how you want to feel, ask your cards: What do I need to do to feel ____________? Then draw a card.

The card I got when I did this was the Four of Wands.

Hanson-Roberts Tarot

To me, the Four of Wands is about community and coming together. It seemed to be telling me to reach out to the community of people who’ve experienced the same thing as me and gather information and support.

So that’s what I did! Afterwards I felt calmer about the whole thing and clearer about what decision is right for me.

The key is that you are doing a reading about how to feel the way you want to feel in relation to your issue – but not about the issue itself.

You aren’t asking what should I do about my problem? What do I need to know? What’s going on here? – you are simply asking how can I feel the way I want to feel?

It’s a very empowering act and it allows you to pull yourself out of the drama of your problems and make strides in a positive direction.

So next time something is bothering you, try this Tarot exercise and see what happens!

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18 Responses to How to Read Tarot for Yourself (When You’re Feeling Emotional)

  1. Shantha says:

    What fabulous advice..I will definitely try it..thank you so much!

  2. KATHY says:

    Great approach. You are brilliant

  3. Kali says:

    Thanks for the technique Kate! I’m going to try it out now for a change.

  4. irish says:

    Awesome technique thank you kate and I pray all goes well for you 💜

  5. Jo Knight says:

    This is excellent tarot reading advice. And a good way to become more familiar with the cards and their meaning for us. Thank you. <3

  6. Linda says:

    Really fantastic way to find some clarity and support when you have an emotional issue. I’m always asking what should I do and I don’t get very helpful answers. Thanks for this great tarot reading advice.

  7. Jamie Morris says:

    What a great technique, Kate. Thank you for devising it and sharing it–and most of all, for showing how effective it is by sharing a personal example.

  8. Teresa Becker says:

    Oh man, I wish I had seen this when I was first diagnosed with breast cancer! You have such a beautiful way of looking at the situation in a positive way, I love it!

  9. Tanya says:

    Hi Kate. This is a really good idea. I hope you have resolved your health issue and are now well. Blessings!

  10. rebecca ferrell says:

    Thank you for your tutorials and insights. I have become discouraged with the tarot as it has been giving misleading information. I had several experienced readers draw for me and their information seemed valid but did not check out with reality. I love the decks, i want to trust them. Its hard when a good reading is totally off. Any thoughts on gaining trust again? Thanks again for your website and insights. 😉

    • Hi Rebecca,
      Try using the cards for journalling, rather than predictions and readings – at least for a few weeks. I think the only way a reading can be “misleading” is when we use it to predict the future.
      Instead of using your cards for readings, try some fun exercises with them. Go through your deck and choose your most favorite card and your least favorite card – journal about them and what you like/dislike about them and how they relate your life right now. I find that doing stuff like this with Tarot can actually give you more insights and ideas than actual readings. Good luck!

    • Apriyile says:

      I hear what you are saying ive been trying for this particular job for months and i did a reading for myself to see if i would get the job all 5 cards came out in my favor but later that day i checked the mail and did not get the job i was so disappointed and began to loose faith in the cards although i did not want to so i spoke with someone and she informed me that not all readings are 100% accurate there could be many factors and she named some she also suggested to ask the cards again what was the issue for the different reading and not to give up on the tarot.

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